OSHA hands down fines to railroad car manufacturer

December 13, 2005

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) handed down $130,500 in fines to Alstom Transportation Inc., Hornell, N.Y., resulting from an inspection conducted in April 2005.

Alstom, a manufacturer and refurbisher of railroad cars, was cited for a total of 17 alleged willful and serious violations of workplace safety and health standards at its Alstom Drive plant.

Two willful citations, which account for $99,000 in fines, were issued for hazards involving large overhead cranes. The first concerned an employee exposed to falls of up to 45 ft. The employee was required to climb over a crane wheel to access the crane's cab. The second violation addressed the company's failure to correct this and other unsafe conditions, including no-load rating capacity and missing runway rail sweeps, OSHA reports.

The inspection resulted in 15 other serious citations including unguarded floors and runways; unguarded machinery; improper storage of compressed gas cylinders; storage of excess amounts of flammable liquids; electrical hazards; no eyewash where employees worked with corrosive liquids; employees exposed to excess levels of cadmium; and employees exposed to being struck by high-pressure water stream operating at 38,000 PSI.